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Sun Safe Devices Put To The Test
A new research centre in Brisbane will test a variety of products that claim to be sun safe.
Queensland University of Technology (QUT) is partnering with Q-Pharm to open its Centre for Testing New Technology, which will test lotions, apps, patches and wearables, and any other products that promise to protect users from the sun.
Technology is playing an increasing role in the prevention of sunburn and skin cancer, via products like personal UV detectors, sunscreen indicator patches and software apps. QUT says that regulating and testing these devices is vital to substantiating the health claims being made.
Rates of sunburn are high across Australia, especially among young people. One study found 72 percent of Queenslanders aged 18 to 24 admit to getting sunburnt.
While new technology encourages people to take responsibility for their skin health in avoiding excessive UV exposure, the value of these devices needs to be tested to ensure they actually improve sun protection habits and reduce sunburn.
The first product to be tested will be wearable stickers that warn users when sunscreen has worn off and needs to be reapplied. The Centre will then work through apps that monitor UV exposure, new therapeutic lotions that promise skin repair, and other wearable devices.
QUT will work with Melanoma Patients Australia and Queensland Health’s Preventative Health Branch to ensure the results translate into community health outcomes.
Johnston, R. (November 3, 2017.) Australian Scientists Are Putting ‘Sun Safe’ Claims to the Test. Gizmodo.